Book Review: Irrationally Passionate by Jason Kothari

Sunday, March 15, 2020 Vishaal 0 Comments

Title: Irrationally Passionate: My Turnaround from Rebel to Entrepreneur

Language: English
Author: Jason Kothari
Genre: Personal Development & Self-Help; Biographies
Publisher: HarperCollins
ISBN-10: 9353572657
ISBN-13: 978-9353572655
Binding: Hardcover
Price: Rs. 509 (Buy from Amazon)
Pages: 268

Short Review:

I fell in love with the easy flow of the book. The narrative takes you on a dream of doing the best possible things you ever wanted to do. Jason Kothari's story should be a must-read for every aspiring entrepreneur who is struggling to make his dream come true. The book is extremely well written, the thought behind the man comes out with such clarity that every reader will instantly click with the story and dreams of Jason Kothari.

Irrationally Passionate - My Turnaround from Rebel to Entrepreneur, is an extremely likeable and honest take on what it is to be an entrepreneur and what it takes to speak about the struggles along the road. 

The Detailed Review:

I'll be honest with you. I did not know who Jason Kothari was until I read this book. I had heard about most of the startups (as would most of you), but this book took me backstage and into the mind of the Entrepreneur behind these startups. If you are an aspiring entrepreneur and have a dream to succeed in doing something innovative, this book will lead you on a path of bold entrepreneurial success.

For a young man, the book is written with exceptional clarity. Perhaps, that is the reason he's done so well as an entrepreneur. However, this book does not, like the typical self-help books, chant out mantras of success. Instead in Irrationally Passionate, Jason Kothari talks about his childhood lessons and experiences that played a major role in his path to success.

His struggles against school bullies and racism at college, the falling out with his friends, habits of a rebellious kind and wake up call when his parents called him out. All these stories tell us that most people have similar issues. The few who rise beyond these are the ones who stand out from the crowd of wannabes. The story of Jason Kothari should inspire many more entrepreneurs.

In the book, you will learn about the following:
- Discover what your true talents are and how to focus them
- Understand that meaningful work is a “gift.”
- Learn the difference between a career, a vocation, and a job.
- Find new job possibilities that never make it into the classifieds
- Negotiate job offers
- Turn your ideas into extra income
- Learn about alternative work models than doing a regular job.
- Find the work that you want to do and were meant to be doing
- Build up your educational assets.

Jason Kothari writes about how he learns to bargain at a very young age, right from a chessboard (he brought the rate of a 500 rupee chessboard to Rs. 30) to how he learnt arbitrage, trading and such stuff by organizing Pizza charity sales and comic book trades at school.

If there is one book you should read this month, please pick "Irrationally Passionate: My Turnaround from Rebel to Entrepreneur". Trust me, you will not be disappointed. If not anything, it will inspire you to look at things from a unique perspective of a rebel turned entrepreneur and how effective parenting and support can work wonders.

Positives: Very easy to read, a passionate narrative and an everyday story.

Negatives:  -

Who will enjoy this? Almost everyone, and especially those who have dreams and are looking for some inspiration to achieve those dreams.

Buy or Don’t Buy? A definite buy. With today's ups and downs and with recession looming, every one of us surely needs some inspiration. (You can buy from Amazon)

Book Blurb: While a college student at Wharton, Jason Kothari scraped together money from family and friends to save his childhood favourite comic book company, Valiant Entertainment, from bankruptcy and bring it back to life. A few years later, he transformed Valiant into the third-largest superhero entertainment company in the world after Marvel and DC Comics and sold it for $100 million.

Jason then became a professional turnaround leader and went on to transform distressed. Indian Internet icons, FreeCharge and Snapdeal, helping save billions of dollars in value, and advise giants like technology investor Softbank and real estate developer Emaar, who have invested billions of dollars in India.

Irrationally Passionate reveals the inside story of how a rebel, train-wreck kid transformed himself into a successful young entrepreneur and business leader who became one of the top ten paid executives in India while only in his 30s.

From getting his first job as an assistant to Jackie Chan in Hong Kong to learning strategy from champion Muay Thai fighters in Thailand to tackling huge personal setbacks to becoming a CEO in 60 seconds, among many other stories— Jason’s inspiring journey across countries, industries and companies has something for everyone, right from students to entrepreneurs to corporate CEOs to even parents of students and entrepreneurs.

Irrationally Passionate is a highly personal, authentic, open and complete account of a young entrepreneur’s life. Brimming with practical advice and philosophical insights, it will force readers to reflect on how they perceive life, work, family and spirituality by giving them a fresh perspective.


Welcome 2020 - My Goals for this Decade.

Thursday, January 02, 2020 Vishaal 0 Comments

A new decade begins. Born in 79, it is also the beginning of a new decade for me. 40 - that number brings a fresh perspective, a period of rumination on what has been and what could have been.

To say I have no regrets would be a lie, but, the good has overshadowed any regrets I have at this point in my life. It is said we should plan for the long term and not worry about things that happen in the near future as long as the plan is in place.

So here is what I wish to achieve over the next decade -

1. Begin and complete my PhD. - This has been a long-standing aspiration for me. Things almost came to fruition in early 2019, but a combination of various factors didn't let it happen. Hopefully, this year would be kinder.

2. Save and Invest more than I spend - My savings and investments have been steadily increasing. This year, I want to at least save and invest 51% of my income. This is currently hovering at around 35%. Hopefully, by the end of the decade, I should have increased the saving percentage to 70% (i.e. more than 2X my expenses).

3. Spend more quality time with family - The elder daughter is inching towards her teens. Sure, it is another 5 years. But, I believe, these 5 years could define my relationship with her during the teenage years. The younger daughter needs to be weaned away from television and movies. Not that it has been an issue (we no longer have a cable/streaming service subscription and watch one or two movies over the weekend on television), but the past week in the holidays, she has been more and more into watching movies.

My parents will be needing more of my time. This is another thing I need to keep in mind.  Managing myself and time will be key to achieve this. Hopefully, I will procrastinate less and execute more.

4.  Build an alternate source of income - Something I have been able to do over the past decade is steadily building an alternate source of income. I hope to become less dependent on my salary and primary job over the next decade and make my alternate source of income more stable and steady. I aim to be financially independent and free by the end of 2029.